Published in the October 2017 issue of St Augustine News Journal

In September, we learned that Equifax had been hacked and the sensitive personal data of 143 million American consumers was stolen. 209,000 of the records stolen also included Credit Card Numbers.

Equifax has set up a site where you can enter your Last name and part of your Social Security number to determine if you were impacted. However, several resources state that testing with fake names and 123456 as the Social Security number get told that they were impacted. The Equifax impact test seems to always return the same result to everyone; Yes, you were impacted.

Equifax has announced they will provide a 1 year complimentary activation of TrustedID Premier. Which includes 5 services; Equifax Credit Report, 3 Bureau Credit File Reporting, Equifax Credit Report Lock, Social Security Number Monitoring, $1 million Identity Theft Insurance.

If you already have LifeLock, IdentityForce, IdShield, or similar credit protection service, you may not want to sign up for the complimentary service. Even if you don’t, you may wish to steer clear of it.

There is a clause in the TrustedID Premier agreement that states that by using the service, you forfeit your right to be part of any class action suit against Equifax. Yes, you read that right.

It is too early to tell what the fallout will be in this colossal hack. But it seems certain that all Americans have once again been put at risk by a very large and poorly secured company. The take away here is that we must assume that our personal data is at risk and most likely already in the hands of the bad guys.

Keep a close eye on your credit card and bank statements. Contest anything that is fraudulent by contacting the financial institution immediately.

Even if your information was not stolen in the hack, the answer to the question above is;
YES, you were impacted.